The Burnham Plan CentennialThe Plan of Chicago A Regional Legacy
Congestion in the early 1900s around Dearborn and Randolph Streets
Congestion in the early 1900s around the Rush Street bridge

Growing volumes of shipping congested the river, while streams of railroad freight and wagon traffic converged near the Rush Street bridge, threatening to choke the business district.

Background of the plan
World's Columbian Exposition. 1894

The harmonious arrangement and quiet order of the World’s Columbian Exposition contrasted greatly with the city’s noise, dirt, and congestion. Could the busy commercial city be made as appealing?

portrait of Daniel Burnham and Edward Bennett

Daniel Burnham, architect, planner, and primary author of the Plan of Chicago (left). Edward Bennett, coauthor of the Plan, oversaw many of its accomplishments in the 1910s and 1920s (right).

An illustration of the McMilan Plan. 1915

The Senate Park Commission, advised by Burnham, prepared a 1902 plan that reshaped the monumental core of Washington, D.C.

An illustration of the San Francisco Plan 1905

Burnham prepared a 1905 plan for San Francisco, but it received little attention after the city was destroyed in 1906 by earthquake and fire.